Educational interventions decrease sunburns among heavy equipment operators
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Bottom Line: Implementation of educational interventions among operating engineers (heavy equipment operators) in Michigan significantly increased the use of sunscreen and decreased the number of reported sunburns.

Journal in Which the Study was Published: Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research

Author: Sonia Duffy, PhD, RN, FAAN, cancer control researcher at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center-Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute; professor and Mildred E. Newton Endowed Chair, College of Nursing at The Ohio State University in Columbus; and research scientist at the Department of Veterans Affairs in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Background: “The rates of melanoma have been increasing in recent decades in the United States, and outdoor workers are at an increased risk for developing this deadliest form of skin cancer,” said Duffy. “We wanted to investigate how behavioral interventions can affect sunscreen use and sunburning among operating engineers as a way to prevent skin cancer.”

While prior studies have indicated that interventions can result in beneficial sun-safety behaviors among outdoor workers, a systematic analysis revealed that this population had inadequate sun-protective behaviors. Furthermore, in a previous analysis, Duffy and colleagues found that approximately

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